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And when she left, she hurried back, as swift
As bird on wing to breast its eggs again : And, patient as a hen-bird, sat her there Beside her Basil, weeping through her hair.
And to examine it in secret place:
And yet they knew it was Lorenzo's face :
And so left Florence in a moment's space,
O Melancholy, turn thine eyes away!
O Music, Music, breathe despondingly ! O Echo, Echo, on some other day,
From isles Lethean, sigh to us— sigh ! Spirits of grief, sing not your “ Well-a-way!"
For Isabel, sweet Isabel, will die; · Will die a death too lone and incomplete, Now they have ta’en away her Basil sweet.
LXIL Piteous she look'd on dead and senseless things,
Asking for her lost Basil amorously: And with melodious chuckle in the strings
Of her lorn voice, she oftentimes would cry After the Pilgrim in his wanderings,
To ask him where her Basil was; and why 'Twas hid from her: “For cruel 'tis,” said she, “To steal my Basil-pot away from me."
Imploring for her Basil to the last.
In pity of her love, so overcast.
From mouth to mouth through all the country pass’d: Still is the burthen sung—“O cruelty, To steal my Basil-pot away from me!”
St. AGNES' Eve—Ah, bitter chill it was !
Seem'd taking flight for heaven without a death, Past the sweet Virgin's picture, while his prayer he saith
His prayer he saith, this patient, holy man;
He passeth by; and his weak spirit fails
Northward he turneth through a little door
Rough ashes sat he for his soul's reprieve,
Stared, where upon their heads the cornice rests, With hair blown back, and wings put cross-wise on their breasts.
V. At length burst in the argent revelry, With plume, tiara, and all rich array, Numerous as shadows haunting fairily The brain, new-stuff'd, in youth, with triumphs gay Of old romance. These let us wish away, And turn, sole-thoughted, to one Lady there, Whose heart had brooded, all that wintry day,
On love, and wing'd St. Agnes' saintly care, As she had heard old dames full many times declare.
They told her how, upon St. Agnes' Eve, a
Nor look behind, nor sideways, but require e
Full of this whim was thoughtful Madeline :
But she saw not: her heart was otherwhere;
She danced along with vague, regardless eyes, a Anxious her lips, her breathing quick and short: The hallow'd hour was near at hand : she sighs a Amid the timbrels, and the throng'd resort le Of whisperers in anger, or in sport;
Hoodwink'd with faery fancy; all amort,
Save to St. Agnes and her lambs unshorn, And all the bliss to be before to-morrow morn.